Canadian singer-songwriter, guitarist and drummer Cheryl Ireland and her band “The Autumn Smoke” was formed in 2018 with guitarist Ken Kucharic and drummer Chris Dove. Earlier this year, Cheryl’s debut EP was released titled “The Wilderness”. The band’s music reflects their love of rock music and Canadian folk and blues. Currently, the band is working on music set out for release by the next year. Cheryl Ireland and The Autumn Smoke have a driving rock sound while maintaining a surreal texture. Resonating harmonies are used throughout a long with a driving guitar line accompanied by some unique sounding vocals.
Her latest single “Let Things Be” has a lot of layers that gives depth and a resonating presence. Cheryl’s vocals have an independent quality to it, in which her voice doesn’t really resemble anyone else’s which shows how unique she is as an artist. The track has a lovely build to it, while maintaining the drive even when it is not at its building point. There are slight hints of folk sound to the song, which overlaps with its ambient instrumental and vocals. The contrasting of textures makes this track a pleasing one to listen to.
Listen to "Let Things Be" on SoundCloud and check out our exclusive interview with Cheryl Ireland below!
Care to introduce yourself to our readers?
Hey Buzz fans! My name is Cheryl Ireland, I am a Canadian singer, songwriter, guitarist and drummer. I have a brand new EP called "This Wilderness" I would love you to check out. I am super passionate about music and performance. I am really excited to be here and having the oppourtinity to share some details about my music with you.
Can you give us a brief history of your musical career?
Definitely, I started singing at a really young age. I'd dress up in my mom's high heels and belt out down in the basement old retro R&B and rock and roll songs. The guitar playing came later in life. The friends I hung out with in highschool all played, and I really wanted to learn so I locked myself in my bedroom for a couple of years and taught myself. This was long before the days of Google, so my practice consisted largely of pressing my ear up to my boombox and focusing on the guitar work. I started performing with a few local bands, exploring different genres and styles. Over the years I honed in on my personal style and began writing. These days I am performing and writing my my band "The Autumn Smoke", which is a rock-folk band with inspiration stolen from blues, classic rock and Canadian folk music. The band consists of myself on vocals and guitar, guitarist Ken Kucharic, and drummer Chris Dove. We are currently in the process of writing our follow up to my debut EP, and will be releasing that in the summer of 2019. We are also working on performances at upcoming Canadian music festivals.
Do you write your own music? Can you tell us a bit about your writing style?
Yep! I sure do. I love writing. My songwriting started when I was a teenager and I started learning guitar. I always wrote poetry, and loved expressing myself through the english language. As time went on, I started putting poetry to music, and eventually developed a writing style which reflected my influences and love of poetry. That's why my music often has a non-traditional format.
My approach to writing songs generally starts with a conceptual theme and a vocal melody. From there, I add guitar and a rhythm section. I am a drummer also, so I always feel the rhythm section while writing the melody. The guys I work with Ken and Chris are very much on the same wave length and can interpret the songs in a way that is very complimentary to my vision. They are both sensational artists in their own right.
Love the new song Let Things Be!!! Can you tell us a bit about it?
Thanks very much! I am really happy you enjoy it. It's a pretty personal song for me. Let Things Be was actually written on acoustic guitar and translated to the more electrified version on the EP. I often write music this way. It's a rock song with a folky underbelly. It's one of my two favorite songs on "This Wilderness". I hope you all get a chance to listen to it!
Where did the inspiration behind Let Things Be come from?
Let Things Be was a song that came to me pretty easily. It was during a time in my life when there was chaos swirling all around me. I had to take a step back to breathe and focus on life. It is a reflection of the journey which has brought me to where I am now, as well as an incorporation of the journey I envision many other women on. The lyrical content tells the listener to "breathe in life and let things be". For me this is a powerful line that resonates deeply with me. We can't change some things in life so it is best to accept things as they are with a sense of peace, and to enjoy the moment we are in.
What are three things you’d love your fans to know about you?
Wow, that's a tough question. I am a pretty open person, and I try to be as honest as possible, especially with my fans. Let me try and break this down.
1. I am a huge lover of all music. I am a huge lover of the creators of music and art. I would love to hear your music, and get to experience what you have created! I love music that shakes up the norm and exposes people to something unique.
2. I think honesty and transparency is really important in my music. I am a conduit for my own identity. When you listen to my music, what you're getting is authentic and genuine and sometimes messy, and I'm okay with that. I think when you commit to exposing your creativity, you also commit to the audience seeing you for what you are.
3. I love people, creatures and the planet. I think we're living in a time where the influence of others comes in crashing waves. It can be difficult to navigate. We are all a beat of the same heart, one voice, one mind, symbiotic. More than anything else, I really love to see people thrive together, support and love one another. It is the greatest machine towards our survival. I really hope my music translates this idea for some people, and inspires them.
Any upcoming shows? For someone who hasn’t seen you live yet, how would you describe your performance?
We have a show coming up on November 23rd in my hometown of Oshawa, Ontario with the amazing Suzie McNeil. Suzie is a pretty remarkable artist and we are pumped for this show. Aside from that, we will be spending the winter writing and creating new material. We will be back out performing and on the road in the Spring of 2019, and are looking forward to some Canadian Music Festivals, and shows with other Canadian artists. You can find out more through my website www.cherylireland.com. We will be making announcements after February.
As far as our performance goes, we are all very passionate about creating a soundscape live. When I am performing, I am most focused on emoting the energy of the music and trying to connect with the listerners. I am full of energy and rawness. Ken Kucharic (guitarist) is very talented with texture and ambiance, and his love of experimental rock really comes through. Chris Dove (drummer) is amazing with "feel" and dynamics. Hearing him play drums is like being in his head. You really get a mirror of Chris. I think the three of us together are on a similar wavelength and are all just really happy to be there, in that moment!
What’s next for you?
We are currently working with a new bass player, and will have more details on that in the coming months. As far as new music goes, we are releasing content currently in EP's rather than full albums. This is due to the way I write. I have thematical ideas a lot for each release, and think our audience will appreciate this method. I don't want to say too much regarding the next release, except that we hope you love it, and definetely stay tuned! Thanks very much for the chat! It's really been a blast. We hope you dig what's next for Cheryl Ireland & The Autumn Smoke!
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